What Does “Positive Is Not Permissive” Really Mean In Dog Training? #198 #podcast

In the world of dog training, the phrase “positive is not permissive” has become quite popular. But what exactly does it mean? Is it advocating for harsher training methods? Or is it a reminder to not let our dogs get away with bad behavior? In this episode of our podcast, we’ll explore the true meaning behind this phrase and how it can help us become better dog trainers. So, join us as we unravel the mystery of “positive is not permissive”!

What Does “Positive Is Not Permissive” Really Mean In Dog Training?


Dog training is an art, and it requires patience, consistency, and compassion. Positive reinforcement is a powerful technique that helps owners train their dogs without using punishment, pain, or fear. It prioritizes the dog’s emotions and strengthens the bond between the owner and the pet. However, some people misunderstand positive reinforcement as being permissive, meaning a dog can do whatever they want without consequence. This is a common misconception. Susan Garrett, the founder of Say Yes Dog Training, emphasizes this in one of her podcast episodes, “Positive Is Not Permissive,” which we will delve into in this article.

Plus, we will explore other essential topics related to positive reinforcement dog training.

Positive reinforcement in dog training prioritizes the dog’s emotions

A dog’s well-being should be the number one priority when they are being trained. Positive reinforcement is based on the principle that when a dog performs a desired behavior, they receive a reward (treats or praise). This technique ingrains positive associations with their desired behavior, making it more likely to occur again in the future. Unlike punishment-based techniques, positive reinforcement prioritizes the dog’s emotional state and creates a positive environment for learning.

Punishment and correction are not used in positive reinforcement dog training

In the past, punishment and correction were the dog training techniques used widely. However, these methods caused many negative side effects, including fear, anxiety, and behavior issues. Positive reinforcement techniques do not use any form of punishment or fear. Besides, punishment does not teach the dog what behavior is expected from them. Instead, it only communicates what not to do.

Positive reinforcement is not permissive but rather creates clarity and expectation for dogs

Many people misunderstand positive reinforcement as being too lenient and not holding their dog accountable. However, positive reinforcement is not permissive by nature. Instead, it creates a clear understanding of what is expected from the dog. Positive reinforcement creates communication between owner and pet and sets expectations for behavior. Using positive reinforcement encourages the dog to learn and entertain expectations, ultimately developing desirable behaviors.

Consistency is key in creating a well-behaved dog

Consistency is crucial in creating well-behaved dogs. Dogs are creatures of habit, and they learn best through consistent repetition. Positive reinforcement needs to be applied consistently, increasing the likelihood of permanent behavioral changes. Any inconsistencies on behalf of the owner lead to confusion and poor performance from the dog.

Daily training sessions, such as Daily Quickies, can be helpful when time-crunched

Owners don’t need to spend hours daily training their dogs. Short and effective training sessions throughout the day are an excellent way to teach dogs new skills or reinforce good ones. Susan Garrett created Daily Quickies, four different 60-second dog training exercises that can be done every day. These exercises target specific skills and are fun and easy for both the dog and the owner.

Recall, retrieve, and relax are top priorities in dog training

Recall, retrieve, and relax are three top priorities in dog training, according to Susan Garrett’s podcast. Recall involves teaching your dog to come back to you when called, while retrieve teaches them to bring a toy or object back to you. Relax teaches the dog how to calm down and settle in various situations (indoors, unfamiliar places, etc.). These skills are essential for a well-behaved and happy dog.

Games can be used to build a deep bond with dogs and teach life skills

Games are a fun and effective way to bond with your dog and teach them skills. They can help improve focus, obedience skills, and prevent boredom. Susan Garrett’s “It’s Your Choice” game teaches dogs impulse control and restraint when it comes to food or objects. Playing games with your dog provides an opportunity for positive reinforcement, and it helps with mental stimulation.

Loose leash walking training should begin at home

Loose leash walking training is an essential skill for any dog, and it should begin at home. A dog that pulls on the leash can be difficult to manage and can lead to issues in several areas. Susan Garrett suggests starting loose leash walking training at home, where the dog is comfortable and familiar. This technique should be practiced regularly to become a permanent response from your dog.

Susan Garrett’s YouTube channel provides training resources

Susan Garrett’s YouTube channel provides various training resources for dog owners. It includes free short training videos for different skills, Q&A sessions, and training advice videos. It’s worth checking out for any dog owner seeking to implement positive reinforcement techniques.

Say Yes Dog Training Team is the creator of Dogs That

Say Yes Dog Training Team created Dogs That, a training program focused on building life skills in dogs. Dogs That includes courses such as Recallers, Crate Games, and Recallers Game. The program focuses on developing a happy and well-behaved dog while building a strong bond between the owner and the dog.

The website and social media pages provide updates on new content

Say Yes Dog Training website and social media pages provide constant updates on new content, training advice, and announcements. Website users can sign up for a mailing list to receive training tips and specific training course discounts.

There is a YouTube celebration event for episode 200

Fans of Susan Garrett’s podcast can tune into a YouTube celebration for episode 200. This free event is an opportunity to celebrate the success of the podcast and engage with fellow dog lovers.

Crate Games Online is a resource for dog owners

Crate Games Online is a resource for dog owners seeking to develop their dog’s crate training skills. It provides informative and entertaining videos on all aspects of crate training, from building a crate foundation to advanced crate games.

The podcast covers a variety of topics related to dog training

Susan Garrett’s podcast covers a vast range of dog training topics, from puppy training to dog behavior and training techniques. The podcast includes Q&A sessions and interviews with experts in the industry. The information provided in the podcast is beneficial for any dog owner seeking to improve their pet’s behavior.

Mindset is important in dog training according to episode 150 of the podcast

Susan Garrett emphasizes the importance of mindset in dog training in episode 150 of her podcast. According to her, a positive and patient owner mindset helps build a positive environment for the pet. Dog training is not always easy, and it requires a degree of patience, perseverance and dedication from the owner.


The positive reinforcement technique is an exceptional way to train your dog without the use of punishment, fear or pain. It prioritizes the dog’s emotions and creates a positive learning environment for your pet. Positive reinforcement is not permissive by nature but rather clear and consistent. With that said, the use of positive reinforcement requires dedication and commitment from the owner. No matter the approach, it’s vital to find a technique that resonates with both the dog and the owner, building a bond through trust and positive association.